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NRA to Push Aggressive Legislative Agenda During<BR>Wisconsin's 2011 Legislative Session

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Last November’s landmark elections are creating historic opportunities for the cause of freedom in the Badger State.  With the combined efforts of gun owners and hunters, anti-freedom majorities in the Assembly and Senate were removed from power, replaced by pro-freedom lawmakers.  Scott Walker, the NRA Political Victory Fund’s endorsed candidate for Governor, will soon succeed Jim Doyle, who relished his title as the most anti-gun Governor in state history.  Doyle’s departure marks an end to a very long and dark chapter in Wisconsin’s history.  Longtime friend of gun owners, J.B. Van Hollen, was re-elected Attorney General. 

Shortly after the 2010 primary elections, the NRA engaged its members throughout the state in an energetic Vote Freedom First campaign.  The response was overwhelming.  At event after event, the one issue that candidates talked about time and time again was the Right to Carry.  They recognize that the day when law-abiding citizens can discreetly protect themselves from violence outside of their homes is long overdue.  It is now time for the candidates-turned-elected-officials to convert their words into action. 

Because of Jim Doyle’s distrust of the people, he twice vetoed Right to Carry legislation during his terms in office.  Each time, the bills were passed with two-thirds majorities in both houses.  This should have been enough to overcome Doyle’s veto pen, but three Assembly members chose partisan politics over personal protection and shamelessly changed their votes from “yes” to “no” during the two override votes in 2004 and 2006.

Past legislative efforts to secure the Right to Carry always assumed that a veto override would be necessary.  Attempting to secure two-thirds majorities required the NRA and other proponents to accept amendments during the legislative process that sought to place additional restrictions on the good citizens of Wisconsin and would have impeded their ability to protect themselves.  With the makeup of the incoming legislature, these unnecessary concessions should no longer be necessary.

The NRA will strive to make Wisconsin’s 2011 Right to Carry law one of the strongest in the country.  The experience of 40 other Right to Carry states has eliminated any question as to whether citizens can be trusted to act safely and responsibly.  The laws of Vermont, Alaska and Arizona will be used as the model.  The latter two, in particular, will set the standard with systems that recognize the citizens’ constitutional right to carry firearms for self-defense along with a provision that will provide for the streamlined issuance of a state permit that can be used for reciprocity purposes in other states while traveling.  The primary difference between the open carry provision that has always been part of Wisconsin’s statutes and permitless/“Constitutional Carry” is that citizens will finally be able to discreetly carry firearms in public.  As we all know, this leaves criminals guessing as to who has the ability to defend themselves against aggression.

With displays of courage and strong leadership from your elected officials; your commitment to be actively involved in the legislative efforts to come; and the NRA’s dedication to this cause, we can achieve an historic victory for Wisconsin gun owners that will last for generations.

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.